Coffee lake

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The vi xử lý core i5-9600K is an iterative update over the previous-gen model. But if you"re shopping for a new processor, it does provide enough of a performance improvement to lớn merit attention. The processor clearly provides the best performance for gaming at its price point, though AMD alternatives are enticing if you"re more interested in productivity applications.

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It used to be that core i5 processors represented the best choice for mainstream users looking for value-oriented pricing, high performance, and modest nguồn consumption. But now, fast Ryzen 5 CPUs often prove superior. Intel did increase the chip core count of its Coffee Lake-based vi xử lý core i5s by 50 percent to lớn grapple with AMD"s first-gen Ryzen 5 chips. However, the latest round of Ryzen 5 models is even faster, particularly in threaded workloads, as you can see in our CPU Benchmark Hierarchy.


Intel"s ninth-gen vi xử lý core i7 và Core i9 processors come with more cores, too. Unfortunately, the vi xử lý core i5-9600K we"re reviewing today does not. It includes the same six cores as its predecessor, along with a price tag that lands between Ryzen 5 2600X and Ryzen 7 2700. Worse, both competing CPUs are bundled with coolers, while hãng intel makes you buy your own.

The story isn"t all bad for Intel. It did switch lớn a solder-based thermal interface material between its die & heat spreader, enabling higher multi-core Turbo Boost frequencies. But those incremental improvements are hardly earth-shattering.


Choosing between a chip core i5-9600K and Ryzen presents the same conundrum we"ve faced in the past: it depends on the type of software you run most frequently. If you"re a bạn who doesn"t really venture beyond 1920x1080, Intel"s chip core i5-9600K is the cpu for you. But if a majority of your workloads are threaded in nature, including nội dung creation and productivity, a powerful Ryzen gets you more performance at a competitive price.

AMD has also launched its Ryzen 3000-series processors. The updated Ryzen line-up employs a smaller 7nm process that should confer power và price benefits. It"ll also wield the new Zen 2 microarchitecture, which is expected lớn boost performance while intel remains mired in a derivative of the seven-year-old Skylake design. These chips have now taken our Best CPUs danh sách by storm, so be sure lớn head there for a list of the latest leading processors.

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Intel chip core i5-9600K

The ~$263 core i5-9600K lands between the $299 Ryzen 7 2700 and $225 Ryzen 5 2600X. Inexplicably, intel raised the -9600K"s price by $5 compared to lớn its previous-gen vi xử lý core i5-8600K.


Core i9-9900KCore i7-9700KCore i5-9600K
ArchitectureCoffee LakeCoffee LakeCoffee Lake
Socket115111511151
Cores / Threads8 / 168 / 86 / 6
Base Frequency (GHz)3.63.63.7
Boost Frequency ( Active Cores - GHz)1-2 Cores - 5.0, 4 Cores - 4.8, 8 Cores - 4.71 core - 4.9, 2 bộ vi xử lý core 4.8, 4 vi xử lý core 4.7, 8 chip core 4.61 chip core - 4.6, 2 core - 4.5, 4 chip core 4.4, 6 chip core 4.3
L3 Cache16MB12MB9MB
Process14nm++14nm++14nm++
TDP95W95W95W
Memory SpeedDDR4-2666DDR4-2666DDR4-2666
Memory ControllerDual-ChannelDual-ChannelDual-Channel
PCIe Lanesx16x16x16
Integrated UHD Graphics GT2 (Base/Boost MHz)350 / 1200350 / 1200350 / 1150
Recommended Customer Pricing$488 - $499$374 - $385$262 - $263

Intel manufactures the -9600K on its 14nm++ process. In addition khổng lồ six execution cores (without Hyper-Threading technology), the cpu includes an integrated UHD 630 graphics engine, sports unlocked ratio multipliers for easy overclocking, and supports two channels of DDR4-2666 memory. Lượt thích the core i5-8600K that preceded it, the -9600K comes equipped with 9MB of L3 cache and a 95W thermal design nguồn rating.


Active CoresBase1 Core2 Cores3 Cores4 Cores5 Cores6 Cores
Core i5-9600K (GHz)3.74.64.54.44.44.34.3
Core i5-8600K (GHz)3.64.34.24.24.24.14.1

Intel does dial up the -9600K"s Turbo Boost frequencies quite a bit, though. Solder-based thermal interface material improves heat transfer, facilitating higher frequencies whether you"re using one vi xử lý core or all six. A base clock rate of 3.7 GHz already represents a 100 MHz improvement over the bộ vi xử lý core i5-8600K frequency floor, and you get as much as a 300 MHz speed-up when multiple cores are utilized.

We didn"t see the need for extreme cooling with Intel"s chip core i5-9600K, even during our overclocking efforts. The processor held a steady 80°C under five hours of Prime95 optimized for AVX instructions, & ~64°C during a series of non-AVX tasks. Granted, we did use a beefy Corsair H115i cranking away at full speed. But you shouldn"t have any trouble cooling the processor at stock settings. Overclocking is fine with a capable closed-loop liquid cooler.


ModelCores / ThreadsBase FrequencyBoost FrequencyMemory SupportPCIe LanesCacheTDPPrice
Core i9-9900K8 / 163.6 GHz5 GHz (1 / 2 Core)4.8 GHz (4 Core)4.7 GHz (6 / 8 Core)DDR4-26661616MB95W$488
Ryzen 7 2700X8 / 163.7 GHz4.3 GHzDDR4-296616 + 4 (NVMe)16MB105W$329
Core i7-9700K8 / 83.6 GHz4.9 GHz (1 Core)4.8 GHz (2 Core)4.7 GHz (4 Core)4.6 GHz (6 / 8 Core)DDR4-26661612MB95W$374
Core i7-8086K6 / 124.0 GHz5.0 GHzDDR4-26661612MB95W$425
Core i7-8700K6 / 123.7 GHz4.7 GHzDDR4-26661612MB95W$330
Ryzen 7 27008 / 163.2 GHz4.1 GHzDDR4-296616 + 4 (NVMe)16MB95W$299
Core i5-9600K6 / 63.7 GHz4.6 GHz (1 Core)4.5 GHz (2 Core)4.4 GHz (4 Core)4.3 GHz (6 Core)DDR4-2666169MB95W$262
Core i5-8600K6 / 63.6 GHz4.3 GHzDDR4-2666169MB95W$279
Ryzen 5 2600X6 / 123.6 GHz4.2 GHzDDR4-296616 + 4 (NVMe)16MB65W$225
Ryzen 5 26006 / 123.4 GHz3.9 GHzDDR4-296616 + 4 (NVMe)16MB65W$199

The core i5-9600K drops into existing 300-series motherboards after a BIOS update. Most, if not all of them, should tư vấn Core i5-9600K and its power nguồn requirements quite easily, though you might want to lớn steer away from the lowest-cost models if you plan on overclocking.

MORE: Best CPUs

MORE: Intel & AMD Processor Hierarchy

MORE: All CPUs Content


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Paul Alcorn
Deputy Managing Editor
Paul Alcorn is the Deputy Managing Editor for Tom"s Hardware US. He writes news and nhận xét on CPUs, storage và enterprise hardware.

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